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“Learn your language well and command it well, and you will have the first component to life.”

Edward Roscoe Murrow (1908-1965), American news broadcaster, VP of CBS, was correspondent during the Blitz.

English

The primary aim of the English department is to give every child a confident grasp of the English language, in order to be able to read, write and express their ideas with assurance.  Language is the essential building block needed to learn any subject and an invaluable life skill.  It is our hope that every child will find pleasure in the subject and leave Wellesley with a personal interest in reading and writing which is independent of school and study.  In this way they begin a journey of lifelong learning.

If I went back to college again, I’d concentrate on two areas: learning to write and speak before an audience.  Nothing in life is more important that the ability to communicate effectively.

Gerald R. Ford

Reading

The curriculum is broken into three main areas which are reading, writing and speaking and listening.

The more that you read, the more things you will know.  The more that you learn, the more places you will go.

Dr Seuss, ‘I Can Read With My Eyes Shut’

  • We strive to foster a love of reading in all children throughout the school.  Some children are naturally drawn toward books whilst others take longer to find pleasure in reading.
  • Every child is given time during the week to read independently.
  • Every child will study class readers with their English teacher, which gives them an opportunity to approach texts that they might not otherwise choose, and to be supported in gaining a deep understanding of the book.
  • Every child has access to the school library.
  • The school library is committed to keeping the shelves stocked with new titles, offering a wide variety of books to suit different interests.
  • Every child will be given support to grasp the skills of decoding and reading independently.
  • When readers are more confident, they will be supported by teachers to understand deeper meaning in texts by looking for inference and learning to comprehend a variety of literature.

Writing

“Quantity produces quality. If you write only a few things, you’re doomed.”

Ray Bradbury

It is our aim that every child leaves the school with the ability to express their opinions and ideas in writing.

  • Every child will be taught to write in a range of styles and to understand the importance of considering their audience.
  • Work is marked regularly with constructive feedback.
  • Outstanding examples of written work are shared via the school magazine and classroom displays.

Speaking and Listening

“Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen.”

Winston Churchill

Every child should leave Wellesley with the ability to share their thoughts confidently and also to understand and consider other people’s opinions.  This takes practice and it is our aim to give the children plenty of opportunity to speak in lessons.  For the most part, speaking comes naturally to children but they may take a little more convincing when it comes to listening!

  • We offer opportunities in English lessons for discussion, debate, peer assessment, pair and small group work, and drama.
  • Children are encouraged to take part in school productions.
  • Children are encouraged to read aloud.
  • Every child takes part in the annual Poetry Recital.

If you are stuck for ideas about which book to read next, have a look at the attachments below.

Useful Websites

http://www.topmarks.co.uk/

Various games and activities for all aspects of the English curriculum - useful for KS2  and KS3

http://poetryzone.co.uk/

A website for budding poets – you can read poems by other young writers, watch videos of poets performing their work, or send your own poems to be published on the website

http://www.crickweb.co.uk/ks2literacy.html

A collection of English games for Key Stage 1 and 2

http://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/

Useful English games and activities for Key Stage 1, 2 and 3

http://www.channel4learning.com/sites/fairground/index.shtml

Games to help with Key Stage 3 English skills

http://www.channel4learning.com/sites/waywithwords/main.html

Games to help with Key Stage 3 English skills

http://childrenspoetryarchive.org/?_ga=1.123865610.1027098551.1412090197

http://www.poetryarchive.org/

An online archive of poetry – it includes audio and video recordings of poets performing their own work